Watch Valley of the Sun
- 1 hr 18 min
Valley of the Sun is an American Western film from the year 1942 starring Lucille Ball, James Craig, and Cedric Hardwicke. The movie, directed by George Marshall, tells the story of a dry and dusty region of Arizona, where life is tough and uncertain. The plot follows the journey of a widowed woman named Christine "Chris" Hammond (Lucille Ball), who is trying to keep her husband's small ranch running amidst a severe drought. However, Hammond's property lies within an area coveted by wealthy cattle rancher, Roy Chadwick (Cedric Hardwicke), whose dream is to extend his empire and cattle herds throughout the whole valley. Despite Hammond's determination to keep her ranch and fight off Chadwick's schemes, she eventually finds herself in desperate need of money. In an effort to save her land, she agrees to work for Chadwick, hoping to make enough profits to pay off her debts. As Chris starts working on Chadwick's ranch, she meets a rugged and charming cowboy named Tom, played by James Craig. Tom has recently been released from jail and is looking to lay low for a while until he can clear his name. Chris and Tom's paths cross, and they soon strike up a friendship. The young couple starts to grow closer, but their budding romance becomes complicated by Tom's secrets and the constant threat of Chadwick's greed. Tom's criminal past also puts Chris at risk and causes tension between them. As the tensions mount, Chadwick's menacing presence becomes even more memorable, and the story slowly crescendos toward a satisfying and dramatic conclusion. The film's visuals and sequences are stunning, drawing viewers into the dusty landscapes of the Arizona desert. The performances of Ball, Craig, and Hardwicke are all commendable, and they play their parts with great depth and personality. Ball's portrayal of a strong and resilient woman battling through hardships is particularly noteworthy. The movie also has some light comedy to temper the suspenseful plot, with Lucille Ball delivering a few laughs while underlining the seriousness of her character's predicament. The dry humor is as much a character in the film as any main actor and adds a pleasing levity to the movie's darker and grittier moments. Overall, Valley of the Sun is a well-paced and enjoyable Western movie that hits all the right notes. The story is engaging, shot beautifully, and supported by a great cast. The plot offers a few twists and turns to keep the audience hooked, and the film maintains good balance between action, comedy, and drama. Any fans of Western or classic films would be remiss not to give Valley of the Sun a chance.